Thursday, 19 June 2014

The Killer Underpants

A Jiggy McCue Story: The Killer Underpants
Michael Lawrence
London, Orchard, 2009, 145p

I haven't read any Michael Lawrence before, despite strong recommendations from many of my students. I suspect it is because I am not concerned about the content and am confident in their appeal to teenage readers, so feel little need to actively promote the Jiggy McCue books.

Jiggy hates new underwear - they just take way too long to wear in. Instead, he wears the same pair every day, even when they get holey and smelly. His mum is fed up, so buys him some new pants, only this new pair won't come off. And every now and then, they start to ripple and suddely whatever Jiggy says comes true! Unfortunately, what comes out of his mouth seems to always get him into trouble, and he's scared these pants are doomed to ruin his life.

This story is so ridiculous it is brilliant. I had no problem completely suspending my disbelief and falling right into Jiggy's strange world of killer underpants. In fact, there were moment when I strangely believed this might actually happen!

Reading Michael Lawrence was a welcome break from some of the heavier teenage fiction I have been reading recently, full of family drama and dystopian action. Jiggy McCue is a simple, comic character created to entertain, and it was delightful to read about such an unfortunate fool.

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